Drills to improve technique

A tennis coach running a tennis coaching session

Drill to improve serving

Stand one metre behind the net, serve four balls in to the service box diagonally opposite you. Once you get all 4 serves (over and in) in a row move back to the service line and repeat. If you get all 4 serves over and in again, move further back (between the service line and baseline) and repeat. The final level would be to hit 4 serves in a row (over and in) from the baseline. If at any point in the game you miss 3 serves in a row you go back to the start.

Drill to improve returning

Ask your partner to serve (or overarm throw) in to a service box. As the returner, you have to try and hit the ball over the net and in to the back zone of the court (between the service line and baseline). Once you have achieved 5 returns in to the back zone switch roles with your partner. To make it more challenging, reduce the size of the zone e.g. between the service line and baseline and to the right or left hand side of the court only.

Drill to improve groundstrokes

Working cooperatively with your partner, feed the ball in and try to achieve a rally of 5 shots. After the 5th shot, stop the rally by catching the ball. Repeat the exercise trying to achieve a rally of 6. Continue to progress until you successfully achieve a rally of 10. Once you have achieved a rally of 10, repeat the drill but instead of catching the ball, play out the point.

Drill to improve volleying

Working cooperatively with your partner, feed the ball in from the service line and move forwards towards the net. Your partner hits the ball back for you to volley. After your volley your partner catches ball (rally of 3 shots). See how many rallies of 3 you can collect in 2 minutes then switch roles. Once you’ve both practiced your volleys introduce scoring.

Drill to improve attacking

Feed the ball in from the baseline to start the rally. When one of you hits the ball short (inside the service line) the other player has to move forward and attack the ball using one of the tactics above. Play first to 10 points. If you win the point from an attack, score 3 points.

Drill to improve defending 

Feed the ball in from the centre of the baseline. Your partner has to stand in the backhand corner of the court but your feed has to go to the opposite corner to start the point. Play first to 10 points but switch roles if the defending player wins the point.

Stay on the ball

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